April 16, 2017 – European Shag (Phalacrocorax aristotelis)
These cormorants are found around the Atlantic coasts of much of Europe and north Africa and parts of the Black Sea coast. Their diet is made up of a variety of fish, including sandeels, along with other marine prey, such as polychaete worms, cephalopods, other mollusks, and small crustaceans. They often forage alone, but may join flocks of a few hundred birds to follow large groups of fish. Breeding in colonies, they build nests from marine vegetation and flotsam on cliffs and rocky areas. Though they are classified as a species of Least Concern by the IUCN, they face a variety of threats, including persecution from commercial fisheries, predation by American Mink at their nest sites, coastal oil pollution, entanglement and drowning in gill-nets, and possible future outbreaks of Newcastle disease.